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‘She wanted to die in my arms, and she did’ – brave Sunderland mum gets her last wish

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LOVING mum Donnette Kitson’s final wish came true when she died in the arms of her husband.

Donnette gathered those she loved most around her for her final few hours, including her two precious sons.

Husband Kevin, of Grangetown, said: “I got to lie beside her as she passed away; we were together at the end.”

For five long years, Donnette battled to protect her children after she was diagnosed with cancer of the kidney.

“There were times she was so poorly but she’d just put a brave face on for the boys. She was a true inspiration, the bravest person I’ve ever known.”

Hard to detect, Donnette’s form of cancer was eventually diagnosed not long after she had given birth to youngest son Jaydon, now five.

Tests were carried out and doctors decided the best course of treatment was to remove the 42-year-old’s kidney.

Sadly, the cancer had attached itself to her lymph nodes and, despite the best efforts of medics, Donnette’s condition deteriorated.

Kevin, 51, said: “For the next three years, she was really poorly but even then she would always make time for other people, listen to their problems.

“The boys knew she wasn’t well. We told them from the start that mummy had cancer, not to scare them, just to be honest with them.”

Jaydon and big brother Aaron, seven, both pupils at Hill View Primary School, carried on with life as best they could until October when Donnette’s condition rapidly deteriorated.

“About a week and a half before she died, it became clear things weren’t going to improve,” added Kevin.

By this time, Donnette, a former Barclay’s Bank worker, was in St Benedict’s Hospice.

Kevin said: “She sat the boys down and told them exactly what was going on, she told them ‘mammy is not going to be here’.”

“It was such a hard time but the staff at the hospice were amazing, they made her as comfortable as she could possibly be.

“They knew I wanted to be with her when she died so, one day, after we came back from a walk, they had got us a bigger bed.”

On Wednesday, October 9, Donnette said goodbye to her sons and, 20 minutes later, died in Kevin’s arms.

As the family try to rebuild their lives, Kevin, who has left his job with a training company, knows what his priority now is.

“The emphasis is now on me to look after the boys. I talked about this with Donnette.

“We now have the same routine in the mornings and we’re trying to keep things as normal as possible.

“I only hope that the bravery and inspiration Donnette showed helps other people, other families who are maybe going through the same thing.”

 

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